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Lewis Associates e-Newsletter
Volume 11 Issue 5
May 2012

Published by Lewis Associates. Dr. Cynthia Lewis, PhD., Editor
Email imaclewis@lewisassoc.com with your comments. Enjoy!

Changes at Lewis Associates

Beginning August 1, 2012, Dr. Lewis will provide appointments 2 days rather than 5 days a week.  New Ultimate Commitment package long-term advising students must start by June 30, 2012.  Appointment days will be Tuesdays and Wednesdays.

  1. As a current Advisee, how will this affect me? 

    The only change will be your phone appointment days. Dr. Lewis will continue to respond to your needs as she always has, in a timely and professional way.  Your long-term package continues, and can be renewed until you are accepted, or you wish to stop at the end of your Agreement.

  2. Can I still start advising from Dr. Lewis?

    Your opportunity for a Personal Assessment at any time is unchanged, but for new advisees, the opportunity to start long-term advising ends June 30, 2012.   Current long-term Advisees can continue long-term.

  3. I may want a Personal Assessment, but Dr. Lewis’ schedule does not allow me to start/finish until after May 31.

    If you have called and committed to a schedule for your Personal Assessment process before June 30, 2012, you have the opportunity to select the Ultimate Commitment Package within a month after your Personal Assessment Report is provided. 

  4. What if I want hourly advising, or one of the essay or interview packages?

    The only change will be the phone appointment days.  Dr. Lewis will continue to respond to your needs as she always has, in a timely and professional way. 

  5. How do I ask other questions?

Please call 805- 226-9669… Monday-Friday, 8 am to 4:30 pm, or leave a voicemail message through June 30, 2012. 

Do you really want to be competitive?

1. Plan ... ahead!

2. Address your weaknesses. What are they?

  • Science GPA?
  • Test (MCAT, DAT) scores, or do you need to take the test for the first time?
  • Clinical experiences? How meaningful are they?
  • Service? What did you do to help others?
  • No close relationships with faculty?

And, how long will it take to really improve? One term? 2 years? Be realistic!

So, whatever quest you have, or issue you want to discuss, Dr. Lewis is the best person to use for personal and academic advice. She's been doing it for 26 years, and "has heard it all". Why don't you let her help you?


This month's question on Dr. Lewis' Facebook page is: "What is important to know about this year's premedical application process?"

Getting into medical, dental, pharmacy and the other health professions schools is getting HARDER!

As usually happens in an economic downturn, more people are attracted to stable careers like the health professions…competition is fierce!

How are YOU going to stand out from thousands of applicants?

Warning about student-run websites from Cornell Medical School Admissions staff:
"PLEASE do not encourage students to get information from web sites administered by other students. From time to time, I look up the studentdoctor.net site (for interview ratings) and I am appalled at the amount of misinformation there. Most of the information given there will hurt students more than help them."

Sick of rumors and false reports? Lewis Associates website has factual information that you can trust.

What's inside:

Welcome to Success Stories Newsletter!
How to Communicate With Us
Your journey to a health profession
Are You Ready for the Class of 2013 or 2014?
Track Record
Be Competitive

What Are Your Chances?
Getting Started

• Is medical school admission squashing creativity?
• Men more likely to reapply to medical schools, study finds
• Health system changes inspire more med students to pursue dual degrees
• What Are the Most Revealing Interview Questions?
• Building a Better Physician — The Case for the New MCAT
• Pre-Med’s New Priorities: Heart and Soul and Social Science
• MCAT changes test students’ communication, people skills
• Reinventing the Third-Year Medical Student.
• Next generation of doctors sees gloomy future
• Student-loan debt seen as growing threat to the economy
• More physicians calling the shots in latest round of ACOs
• Obama's health law has accelerated marketplace change
• What Do Residents Do When Not Working or Sleeping? A Multispecialty Survey of 36 Residency Programs
• In age of gadgets, doctors try to keep human touch
• Technically Speaking - How mobile devices can help a physician land a job
• Patients Take Back Control with Technology
• Modest Improvements in Awareness of Racial and Ethnic Health Disparities over a Decade
• Match results: Highest match rate for U.S. seniors in 30 years
• End-of-life care: Pain control carries risk of being called a killer
• Genome sequencing to add new twist to doctor-patient talks
• Website by The Hastings Center offers Q&A on patients' ethical quandaries

Useful Links
• Class of 2013 AMCAS Video Tutorials
• Mentoring in Medicine & Science
• Genetic Testing, Help with Hard Questions - A Project of The Hastings Center

Alumni Update
• Apryle, Entering Class of 2011, University of New England College of Osteopathic Medicine
• LaDawn, Entering Class of 2008, Medical College of Georgia
• Tana, Entering Class of 2011, George Washington University School of Medicine

Success Story of the Month
• Shawn, Entering Class of 2012, University of California, Irvine School of Medicine

Question of the Month
• Dr. Lewis' answer to this month's question: "What is important to know about this year's premedical application process?"

See our Facebook page, Advising Tips tab.

Our Services


Welcome to Lewis Associates!

Nearly one in ten Americans ages 20 to 24 is unemployed. But, health care jobs remain an economic bright spot. The U.S. Department of Labor expects the health sector to add more than 1.4 million workers over the next ten years. Students in college and even high school can start preparing now for a rewarding health career.

Are you ready?

Our Track Record
Entering Class of 2012...100% acceptance
Entering Class of 2011...100% acceptance
Entering Class of 2010...86% acceptance
Entering Class of 2009...96% acceptance
Entering Class of 2008...96% acceptance
Entering Class of 2007...97% acceptance
Entering Class of 2006...89% acceptance
Entering Class of 2005...100% acceptance
Entering Class of 2004...100% acceptance

If you are interested in personalized advising from “The Best in the Business,” (quote by Dr. Patrick Linson, Harvard Medical School Alum who is the only Native American Radiation Oncologist on the planet!), call Lewis Associates today to schedule YOUR personal assessment. Dr. Lewis invests in you, so you may live up to your potential to be the best applicant you can be!

How to Communicate With Us

Phone: 805-226-9669
Fax: 805-226-9227

Email: imaclewis@lewisassoc.com

Mailing Address: 1885 Laguna del Campo, Templeton, CA 93465

Lewis Associates absorbs Long Distance Charges

All phone conferences are made from our office to you. Marcia, our Administrative Assistant, calls YOU at your appointment time.

Where are you in your journey to a health profession?
In high school? Yes, we advise high school students, particularly, those interested in BA-MD programs!

Just starting college?
This is a scary time.  Everything is new…how do I meet all those new expectations?

Moving into your difficult upper division sciences as a college junior? Possibly, the "dreaded organic chemistry"…

Re-entering as an "older" non-traditional student? Re-establishing academic discipline…

We help prepare those of you submitting applications for medical and dental Residency programs, too!

Whatever niche you fit, we advise students just like you.

Are you REALLY ready to apply for the Class of 2013 or 2014?
How do you know?

Use our Personal Assessment--and you will be given your individual strategy and path to your future! Then, if you use our advising, we help implement your strategy! And if you start the ultimate Commitement Package within 6 months, we subtract your Personal Assesment Fee from the total. If it were easy to do, all applicants would be accepted...and, that is not the case.

Many whom we advise may not yet be ready, and need to develop some aspect of their background to become competitive. Best to apply when you are ready, be competitive, and do it ONLY ONCE!

Let's work together to make that one-time application successful…contacting us earlier is better so we can develop your strategy and address all those difficult problems…months or years prior to application. Why not set yourself up for success, rather than toy with the proposition of failure?

Gail Ruth, mother of Todd Ruth, Entering Class of 2010, Jefferson University Medical School
Just a short note here to let you know how appreciative we are of all the wonderful help you gave to our son, Todd. He just received his first 2 acceptances from his top choices, so we couldn't be more pleased.! You were instrumental in guiding him as to which courses to take and gave him invaluable help with his essays. Thanks once again for all your help and guidance.

David and Maureen Lee, parents of Eric Lee, Entering Class of 2009, Saint Louis University School of Medicine
June, 2009: "Dr. Lewis, We just wanted to drop you a quick note to say thank you for all of your strategic guidance, wise counsel, encouragement, and mentoring to our son Eric on his journey to get into medical school. That is quite a process!! Eric definitely took the "road less traveled", majoring in philosophy, but he worked really hard to get his science prerequisites under his belt. He benefited so much from your experience, insight, and when needed, "tough love". You kept him on track, and we thank you. We think he will be an excellent physician. Perhaps some day we will meet. Again with gratitude, David and Maureen Lee."

Michael Nevarez, Entering Class of 2006, Harvard University School of Medicine, his first choice school
"Dr. Lewis was a wonderful guide and mentor as I embarked on a medical career a number of years after graduating from Cal Poly (graduated 2001, applied to med school in 2006). She gave an honest assessment of the strengths and weaknesses of my profile, and more importantly provided specific and personalized ways in which I could address my application and the process going forward. Her advice and experience was invaluable and I am very happy to have worked with her."

Margaret Jolley, Entering Class of 2008, UC San Diego School of Medicine, her first choice school
"I never would've made it without my weekly conference with the calm, experienced Dr. Lewis. She kept me sane. I am so grateful for her guidance, for her editing help, and for the confidence she instilled in me. She is a genuinely caring committed Mentor who takes pride in helping our dreams happen. I have urged every fellow student I know to call her. Let her help you, too!"

Austin Yoder, Entering Class of 2009, Accepted to Uniformed Services University for Health Sciences, Philadelphia Osteopathic-GA, West Virginia Osteopathic, Tennessee Osteopathic, and Kansas City Osteopathic
"I am utterly grateful to Dr. Lewis for all her help, guidance and mentorship through the application process. I owe a great deal of my success to date to her team."

Ariel Chairez, Entering Class 2004, Scholarship Awardee, University of Wisconsin Medical School
"Dr. Lewis, I would like to thank you for all of your help. Without your guidance, I would not have been accepted into medical school this year. I am extremely happy to have been accepted to one of the top medical schools in the country, and to have received a scholarship of $130,000. For any student who questions the value of your services, I can say that you have saved me $130,000 in tuition!  Thank you."

John Fiszer (Lawyer), Entering Class of 2005, University Of Illinois at Chicago College of Medicine
Dr. Lewis' note: John was an Assistant State's Prosecuting Attorney in Chicago, Illinois, when he contacted me in 2004. Finishing his 4th year of medical school, he said: "I am really enjoying med school, and I am thankful to Dr. Lewis for her help. Her methodical, disciplined approach to the med school application process, as well as her insight into the transition to med school were right on target."

Ali Warrick, Advisee
"Dear Dr. Lewis,
I appreciate your help in my transfer process to UC Berkeley. You have been an integral part of the transition, and I would like to thank you for your time and efforts.  I know that your work is very thorough and well thought out. In addition, I believe that you really care about your students, and believe in each student's "right fit" in a school. You lead many people toward a brighter future, and I would like to say, 'Thank You!' for your contribution toward my academic goals. This process has been much more enjoyable with your guidance. Thank you for being so good at what you do."

S, Entering Class 2008, accepted with full scholarship to Mayo Medical School
"I cannot thank Dr. Lewis enough for her support and invaluable advice. When I came to her, I was apprehensive about the formidable task of applying to medical school especially with my past academic and personal hardships. She helped me see that overcoming these difficulties was a testament to my strength, dedication, and diligence. One of the most surprising outcomes of our relationship was that she was effective in helping me develop a more positive self-image and conquer many of my insecurities. Without her guidance and letter of evaluation, I would not have been able to earn an acceptance to Mayo Medical School, which granted me a merit scholarship that covers almost all of my tuition. I truly appreciate all of her help. She went above and beyond her role as an Advisor by becoming a Mentor to me. She is absolutely the best in the business!"

Be Competitive
In order to be a competitive Class of 2013 or 2014 applicant, you need to submit a quality application as evaluated by your clinical, service and other experiences and your GPA-MCAT/DAT/GRE, etc. profile in a timely fashion. This requires a well thought-out strategy to carry you through the difficult year-long application process. If you use Dr. Lewis' advising, we begin preparation early in the year BEFORE submission of your application!

EARLY is always better, removes much of the pressure, and allows time to solve unforeseen problems and challenges.

What are your chances?
If you want to change your career, or reach your present career goal, but do not know how to begin, or how to jump over all those hurdles, Lewis Associates will advise you and implement strategies to change your life. Dr. Lewis is thorough and professional.

Getting Started

Read on our website about getting your Personal Assessment done, then phone or email us to get started!
Dr. Lewis spends, on average, 7 hours developing an effective strategy of taking you from where you are to where you want to be. Added Benefit: We will subtract the cost of your Personal Assesment from an Ultimate Commitment Package if you choose it within 6 months.

You may be like our other Lewis Associates Advisees -- highly motivated and intelligent -- but needing focus, guidance and specific technical expertise. Dr. Lewis solves problems for her Advisees and finds opportunities for them. Or, you may wish to use hourly advising to solve one specific problem.

Dr. Lewis is a trained Biologist, having taught and directed her own research programs for many years at two universities. She earned two postdoctoral fellowships (one at NIH), received the 1990 NACADA Outstanding Institutional Advising Program in the U.S. and directed her own Health Careers Opportunity Program grant for 6 years, bringing $1 million to her university
while helping hundreds of disadvantaged students enter health professions.

If you are serious about making your dreams to become a physician, dentist, physician assistant, veterinarian, optometrist, podiatrist, naturopathic physician, or pharmacist a reality--Dr. Lewis can help you. We have made the difference for more than 800 alumni now training or practicing in medicine over the last 26 years.

Dr. Lewis teaches Professionalism, Leadership, and Quality, and sets high standards for her Advisees.

Lewis Associates will save you money and heartache on your preparation and application process.

Contact the Health Career experts! For more information email imaclewis@lewisassoc.com. Call 805-226-9669 to set up your first appointment.



Is medical school admission squashing creativity?
What does it take to get into medical school today? High MCAT scores. Pre-requisites galore, coupled with a stellar GPA. Research experience. Clinical experience. Volunteering. It has become a series of checkboxes, many going through the process gripe. Worse, it’s an exercise in conformity.

Men more likely to reapply to medical schools, study finds
Hispanics and blacks were more likely to reapply than whites, and being older than 23 decreased the chances of trying again.

Health system changes inspire more med students to pursue dual degrees
Medical schools see growth in enrollment in extra degree programs as students seek an edge in what they believe will be a changing job environment.

What Are the Most Revealing Interview Questions?
Simple questions that can provide tremendous insight into an interviewee's personality, behavior and attributes.

Building a Better Physician — The Case for the New MCAT
Beginning in 2015, the MCAT will include a section on behavioral and social sciences, and a section on critical analysis and reasoning will replace the writing sample. These revisions reflect the recognition that behavioral and social factors not only play major roles in health and illness, but also interact with biologic factors to influence health outcomes. Fundamental knowledge about behavioral and social sciences is critical to the effective practice of medicine.

Pre-Med’s New Priorities: Heart and Soul and Social Science

MCAT changes test students’ communication, people skills
Doctors need to do more than just give a diagnosis. They need to truly care about their patients. They need people skills. But how do you test a person's communication and interpersonal skills on paper?

Reinventing the Third-Year Medical Student.
Sailing through as many as six disciplines in just under a year, students have opportunities for only transient relationships, garnering mere snapshots of their patients’ illnesses and lives.

Next generation of doctors sees gloomy future
A majority of young doctors feel pessimistic about the future of the U.S. healthcare system, with the new healthcare law cited as the main reason. http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/04/11/us-usa-health-survey-idUSBRE83A0ZH20120411

Student-loan debt seen as growing threat to the economy
The Fairness for Struggling Students Act would allow students who borrowed from private lenders for their education to wipe out that debt in bankruptcy proceedings. http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/businesstechnology/2018013140_pfstudentloandebt22.html

More physicians calling the shots in latest round of ACOs
Most of the new accountable care organizations approved by Medicare are led by doctors, who can share bonuses for keeping patients healthy and cutting costs.

Obama's health law has accelerated marketplace change

What Do Residents Do When Not Working or Sleeping? A Multispecialty Survey of 36 Residency Programs

In age of gadgets, doctors try to keep human touch
As the United States moves to paperless medicine, doctors are grappling with an awkward challenge: How do they tap the promise of computers, smartphones and iPads in the exam room without losing the human connection with their patients?

Technically Speaking - How mobile devices can help a physician land a job
A device most physicians have on hand could give them a leg up on their job search: a smartphone or tablet computer.

Patients Take Back Control with Technology
Technology can be a wonderful thing. It can also be a cold and dehumanizing thing. Unfortunately, in medicine, that often happens with one and the same device.

Modest Improvements in Awareness of Racial and Ethnic Health Disparities over a Decade
Despite persistent racial and ethnic gaps in health care and health status, awareness of such disparities remains low among the general public.

Match results: Highest match rate for U.S. seniors in 30 years
More than 95 percent of U.S. medical school seniors—the highest rate in 30 years—matched to residency positions in the 2012 Match, according to data from the National Resident Matching Program (NRMP)

End-of-life care: Pain control carries risk of being called a killer
Accusations of euthanasia are common as patients, families and even other health professionals struggle to adjust to the new realities of end-of-life care.

Genome sequencing to add new twist to doctor-patient talks
Ethical questions need to be answered, including what genetic findings should be reported to patients.

Website by The Hastings Center offers Q&A on patients' ethical quandaries
Genetic testing and end-of-life care are among the issues covered in a patient-oriented bioethics initiative.


Class of 2013 AMCAS Video Tutorials

Mentoring in Medicine & Science

Genetic Testing, Help with Hard Questions - A Project of The Hastings Center

Find these and other useful links on Lewisassoc.com's Links Page.

alumni updates


Apryle, Entering Class of 2011, University of New England College of Osteopathic Medicine

Mar 28, 2012: " Hi Dr. Lewis, I've been good. Busy with school not surprisingly and in the process of submitting applications for summer research fellowships. I'm planning on doing prostate cancer research in a lab at Dana-Farber this summer. I do like New England College of Osteopathic Medicine. A lot of the professors are great. They're always happy to meet with you if you have questions and free tutors are available in almost any subject (which has been nice for me because they have other med students tutor, so I've been making a little extra money by tutoring a couple of my classmates in Biochem). There's a couple classes I think could be run differently, but I'm sure you'd get that anywhere. Hope you've been doing well too. Best, Apryle"


LaDawn, Entering Class of 2008, Medical College of Georgia

Apr 4, 2012: " Dear Dr. Lewis, it's been a long time since we have chatted but I am doing well. I will be graduating from the Medical College of Georgia this May and looking forward to starting my residency program this July. I have been accepted to a Radiology residency at MCG and am thrilled to have my 1st choice. Unfortunately, my mother passed away 2 weeks ago, but I am grateful that she knew my dreams and hopes for a career in Radiology were fulfilled. I thank you again for your advising!"


Tana, Entering Class of 2011, George Washington University School of Medicine

Apr 20, 2012: "Hi Dr. Lewis, I just wanted to send you an email to see how you are doing! On my end, medical school is proving as hard as all the rumors say, but hey, I'm enjoying as much of it as I can. The classes are definitely tough and tiring, but somehow I'm getting through it! Medical school is definitely an ego checker, that is for sure! My final exams are rolling around soon, but once I finally get through this last stretch, I will have more time to catch up with everyone including you! In terms of summer, I'm doing a research fellowship at the Childrens National Medical Center here in D.C. and working on a project for my Medical Education track (still teaching! Didn't forget my love for it) as well as running our free student run clinic, since I'm part of the Committee running that, too. Many things happening for me here; it is definitely very exciting! D.C. is very loud though! I think I have heard the President's loud motorcade and helicopter already at least 10 times since being here. Just wanted to email to say I am still alive and haven't forgotten you! Thanks for getting me here, once again! Although, I have a sort of love/hate relationship with being here. I shall email you again when I can crawl out of my hole in the library. Sincerely, Tana"

Watch for Success Stories coming for some of these alumni!

success story


Shawn, Entering Class of 2012, University of California, Irvine School of Medicine

Throughout my adolescence, I was sure I wanted to become a firefighter. I was involved in a fire exploring program, attended numerous fire academies and earned multiple certifications in fire control. It wasn't until my mother was treated for an aggressive lymphoma that I decided to become a physician. This decision came half way through my college career, and after I had already earned an Associate Degree in Fire Technology. I transferred from a community college to San Diego State University to study Public Health while taking additional pre-medical requirements. I knew to be a successful applicant I needed to maintain a great GPA. However, I also knew there were many extracurricular experiences I needed to gain before applying. I was referred to Dr. Lewis by a friend and spent the next two years learning how to become a great applicant.

Dr. Lewis proved to be the most useful to me in two aspects. Having worked in pre-health advising for 27 years, she has made many connections with medical students, doctors, and admissions officers. When I told Dr. Lewis I was interested in oncology, she facilitated a meeting with one of her past advisees, a now Harvard graduated radiation oncologist. I spent the summer with this physician gaining hands on experience by working with nurses, radiation technologists and radiation physicists, and interacting with patients suffering from a wide spectrum of cancers. This experience solidified my desire to become a physician. Dr. Lewis also helped me tremendously by proofreading and editing my personal statement and AMCAS experiences; which was started months in advance and drafted at least 17 times. My personal statement was near completion before most of my peers had even started theirs.

I chose to focus most of my attention on two very significant extracurricular activities. I joined the SDSU Environmental Health Lab in the Graduate School of Public Health to investigate concentrations of persistent organic pollutants adsorbed onto plastic marine debris. I chose this research because it combined my interests in health science, environmentalism and the ocean. I also became a hospice volunteer. My job was simply to offer comfort and companionship to terminally ill patients. These experiences were incredibly meaningful to me, and that shined through in my personal statement, secondary applications and interviews.

The application year is incredibly stressful, but also very fun. It is exciting to have a legitimate excuse to travel across the country. I was able to visit New York, Chicago, Nebraska and Boston. In total, I interviewed at 9 great medical schools and was accepted to 5. I withdrew everywhere after being accepted to my first choice - University of California, Irvine School of Medicine, where I will be starting in August! Good luck to all applying this year and next.

Email to Dr. Lewis if you wish to communicate about medical schools or other issues or to contact those profiled in Success Stories: imaclewis@lewisassoc.com

question of the month... see Facebook, Advising Tips tab
By Dr. Cynthia Lewis, PhD

"What is important to know about this year's premedical application process?"

We will feature an important question each month. Please submit one that interests you for Dr. Lewis to answer. Send your questions to imaclewis@lewisassoc.com with 'Newsletter Question' in the subject line.

lewis associates advising services

Lewis Associates specializes in personal, effective and professional premedical advising and placement for traditional and non-traditional applicants. Often, non-traditional students are older than 21 years of age, career changers, international applicants or second-round applicants for admission to health professions school.

Lewis Associates' services meet the needs of all types of students from pre-applicants to applicants, including hourly advising support for specific needs. Click here.


"It's never too late to be who you might have been."

If this is how YOU feel, then, maybe Lewis Associates is the place for you. Lewis Associates provides Mentoring and Coaching through the rigorous and often circuitous pre-health preparation and application process. Other consultants may support programs like Law and Business or graduate school -- not Lewis Associates. We are the experts in Health Professions based on 26 years of a successful track record.

Call or email today to set your first appointment!

805.226.9669 imaclewis@lewisassoc.com

Copyright 2009, Lewis Associates. All rights reserved. Please do not repost on any website without direct permission from Lewis Associates.

Please feel free to forward this newsletter to any friends, classmates, or colleagues you feel would find its contents beneficial.

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